If you haven't seen the Jonathan Dong's (wahoo ICO!) Thrift Opt Video, you really need to check it out. I haven't done a lot of video editing, but I can recognize talent and hard work when I see it.

One of the first comments I heard about this video was "that guy has too much time on his hands". I'm a pretty laid back guy but this sort of attitude annoys the [redacted] out of me. 

This was also one of the first comments I received when I started showing off my EyeDock Web site 10+ years ago. My skin admittedly a little thin, but it was crushing to hear a response like this after dedicating a year's worth of free time to my passion.

I think that, if someone creates something great, it should be celebrated. I don't care what it is. I don't even care if you don't like it. That fact that someone poured their heart and soul into their project deserves your respect.

And free time? Some people don't like to watch TV. Some people can't understand how anyone could spend half a day golfing. And other people like to spend their time making things

Some people might say creating a something like EyeDock and producing a hip (do the kids still say that?) music video are totally different. After all, EyeDock generates some income (enough for me to justify spending the last decade working on it, anyway). However, I would disagree. I think developing a skill is always valuable.

Take, for example, Oculus Invaders, my "video game for optometrists". It really serves no practical purpose. By the time I finished it I felt it'd taken up way too much of my time and, when I put it on the Web site, I only received one comment - from an angry OD complaining that it was keeping his staff from doing their jobs.  Still, making this game was very helpful for me. I learned the ins and outs of programming in Flash and it allowed me to develop many new features for EyeDock over the years.

The bottom line is, we all have some free time (except me - I have two jobs and three little kids!).  We can use that time to create something of value, even if the value is that it makes someone smile or it just gives you some satisfaction.  Or, we can spend two hours a night watching TV and complain about how other people have too much time on their hands.

. . .Then again, how did he do this while at ICO?  Why, when I was a student, I studied 23 hours a day!

AuthorTodd Zarwell